With the passing of Memorial Day, one thing is for sure: even though the calendar still says spring, it is officially sizzlin’ summer in the city.
Summer is my favorite time of year. I like the hot days, the late nights and the lazy feel. Even though I am long out of school, I still feel that summer thrill of the last day of classes (and having a birthday in August doesn’t hurt, either).
I love the summer — and with Prospect Park, a neighborhood that empties out a bit, and the constant block parties and stoop sales, I feel that we have an edge on summer fun. But I have recently discovered that there are mixed feelings about my favorite time of year. Some people told me that they don’t like the extra crowds in the park. And dog owners don’t like the extra garbage.
Most people admitted that they like the warm mornings, when the whole day stretches out before you and the sun has not gotten unbearable yet. And plenty of people love the free concerts at the bandshell (“Celebrate Brooklyn” kicks off on June 14, by the way).
An added benefit of the summer is that people take their cars out of the city. That means we get more parking spaces (the ground may be hot enough to melt your tires, but at least those tires are parked, and legally at that). The exception to this rule, of course, is the parking hell created by the concerts in the park. Check the schedule now, and plan accordingly — especially on the Philharmonic night!
With all those folks leaving town for the beach or the house in the country, those of us who stay behind get to dine out without reservations. Tables are often available, even on weekends, so those of us (myself included) who can never remember to think ahead finally have a chance at trying the new hot spot.
Two other great summer pluses are not exactly in Park Slope proper but are nearby and populated by Slopers. The Red Hook pool, Brooklyn’s country club, is only a short (bike) ride away. I am counting the days until I can frolic with the masses and cool off in the vast blue pond, thanks to Robert Moses.
And no summer would be complete without the Cyclones and a few trips to Keyspan Park. I go to a few games a year, and I see more of my Park Slope neighbors there than I do at the Key Food.
So the summer gets mixed reviews from some, but for me, it is the time of year to kick back (and when my kids are away at camp, it is like taking a vacation without leaving town).
I intend to grab an iced coffee, sit in the new back garden of Cafe Eleven, stroll the hot avenues and enjoy the park and the free music all I can. But first, I have to get my air conditioning fixed. I may like the heat, but I hate being hot!
Start planning now! June 23 is the day set for “Stoopendous,” an all-day, Slope-wide stoop sit-in (or sit-out, perhaps). As part of the “Seven for ’07” initiatives sponsored by the Park Slope Civic Council, Stoopendous aims to have everyone come together to celebrate the Summer Solstice (no matter that the solstice is actually June 21, you get the idea). For information go to www.stoopendous.org. …
The menu has been posted in the window at Scalino, the soon-to-open Italian joint that replaced a grubby Chinese restaurant at the corner of Seventh Avenue and 10th Street. And the menu makes it clear that the rumors of upscale Italian were true: We can’t wait to tuck into that braised lamb shank with lentils ($15.50) or the papardelle with smoked bacon ($10.50). …
Uptown Fashion meets Brooklyn Art! Local sculptor Martha Walker is movin’ on up, at least temporarily. Her work will be exhibited in the windows of Saks Fifth Avenue in Manhattan now through June 10. …
Police Officer Louis Gubitosi from the 76th Precinct received one of this year’s awards from District Attorney Charles Hynes at a ceremony last month at the Brooklyn Marriott. Gubitosi was honored for saving a woman’s life on Smith Street last year when she was assaulted and held at knifepoint. The officer shot the man after he refused to let the woman go.